everydaysparks

Stuff I see, which you might not.

Tony Bennett. Legend.

on April 12, 2012

Last night my mum and I went to see Tony Bennett at the Sydney Opera House. (Just to clarify – the pic on the left is a Billboard Grammys photo, we didn’t get that close. And he didn’t bring Lady Gaga. But I think that the photo is funny.)

I had bought the tickets for my mum’s birthday earlier this year as we love Tony Bennett and his cronies (something to do with my Grandad, our own Italian-New Yorker, I’m sure).

We last saw Tony Bennett at the Lyric Theatre at Sydney’s Casino (a truly beautiful theatre stuck in a hideously tacky venue – imagine the Kardashian wedding held in Paris’ Sacre Coeur and you’ll kinda get the feeling). So it was nice to see the now 85 year old crooner in the fabulous Concert Hall of the Opera House on a cool Sydney evening. (And if you’re not from ’round here, the tent looking things in my pic on the right aren’t market stalls but Opera Bar – best views in town.) The average age of the crowd was probably about 60 and I helped the nice couple next to us read their ticket numbers (they forgot their glasses) and the chap in front was sporting a fetching 1960s style red gingham jacket (and he wasn’t a hipster being ironic).

Tony’s daughter Antonia opened the show. Now, I don’t like to be cruel and Lord knows I can’t sing, but I do believe that if she was a gal born to a different daddy, Antonia would not be singing on the Opera House stage. Her voice is fine – sometimes sweet, but not very strong and often a little pitchy to my ears. I whispered to my mum, I hope that if Dad becomes a singer, he lets me open his show even though I can’t sing. And like a true stage mother, she replied, Well I hope you’ll wear something a lot more glamorous if that happens.

But Antonia knew we hadn’t come to see her, so she only stayed on stage for about 30 mins before the real star of the show came out. And what a star he is – performing hit after hit for over an hour and a half, without a break or a drink of water. HE IS 85. And his voice is strong – maybe just a little creaky by the end of the night, as anyone’s would be – as he hits the higher notes and brings home the powerful lyrics. HE IS 85. His band (at least from where we were sitting) all look like old timers too, but they were equally impressive.

From classics such as I Left My Heart In San Francisco to The Way You Look Tonight; from his stories about Bob Hope and Charlie Chaplin to bustin’ out some amazing dance moves that would put most men in their 20s to shame; from his genuine delight when people applaud or squeal to the incredible finale – Fly Me To The Moon. Without any microphone. HE IS 85. He said it was to test the acoustics of the Concert Hall, but I reckon it was to test the ol’ lungs and maybe show off a bit that he’s still got such talent. Whatevs, Tony Bennett – at 85 as at 25, you’re a true legend.

 

 

(This last pic has no relevance – I just took it last night and didn’t want our Bridge to feel left out of this post.)

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6 responses to “Tony Bennett. Legend.

  1. Did you know that Tony Bennett is 85? Just saying… BTW – your Mum sounds fab’!

    • Cate says:

      Ok, ok – maybe I overdid it, but HE IS 85! Which, when you see him in action, is so hard to believe. I also make the point in case anyone is putting off getting tickets to these shows, in the hope of another Tony Bennett tour to Australia in years to come… Oh, and you’re right about my mum – she has some classic comebacks!

  2. This lady is a Tramp says:

    I love that first photo and want to know where I can get my very own Lady GaGa ventriloquists dummy?
    I do have a question though – are you saying that the Sacre Coeur is a tacky venue thus implying that the Kardashians are comparable to a beautiful theatre? I am not disagreeing with you but I suspect we are in the minority.

    • Cate says:

      Aha, I had already googled the Lady GaGa doll/dummy in expectation of that very question. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find anything suitable. And by ‘suitable’, I mean G-rated and from a respectable store.
      Now, re the Kardashians & Sacre Coeur, was more the juxtaposition (uh huh) of tacky and beautiful I was going for, respectively. Although it clearly works both ways – Kimmy could indeed be described as beautiful theatre and Sacre Coeur did, in my experience, have quite a lot of dodgy looking people wandering about it. So, in answer to your question: yes or no.

  3. Brissy Buppa says:

    God love your mother for her insightful comments! Be good to hear words of wisdom from her in future blogs. She can be like the Maggie to your Kathy Griffin!

    Did you partake in some Opera Kitchen dining prior?

    • Cate says:

      Thank you! I am sure she will make many more appearances here. (Like when I called her today and the reception mustn’t have been great, so she asked, “Are you hiding in a box under the table at work?” Yes, yes, like I always do, Mum!)

      Although she was asking me again last night just what a blog is…and when I tried to take a photo of the man in the crazy sports jacket to post, she was worried & hissed at me, “Stop it. What if he has a blog too?” Uh huh. A future post may simply be a transcript of her explanation of how the internet works. And then text messaging. She has an excellent imagination, so I reckon her ideas will be amazing!

      As for dinner, no Opera Kitchen (although we walked past and Mum was impressed, so will go there next time) – we had pizza and (Nashi pear, rocket & parmesan) salad at one of those restaurants along the water at East Circular Quay. Outside, but under the heaters – brrrrrr!

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